Social Media in HE – book update



I was really pleased to get an email from Open Book Publishers (OBP) yesterday which started with this opening sentence:

“Dear Chris,

I’m delighted to let you know that I received a positive report (with suggestions for revision) from our first referee and that we decided to accept your manuscript for publication pending some changes.”

So after a year’s work on the book the publishers have given me confirmation that it will be published. It wasn’t my original intention to go with an official publisher when I first embarked on this project. When I first started I intended to self publish the book, simply as a pdf or with an epublisher but the book has almost taken on a life of its own. I received more chapters than I expected and also the range of topics enabled me to group them by themes and develop a coherent whole to the book.

There is still more work for me to do as the editor. OBP had the manuscript peer-reviewed and they have many suggestions for improvements. These are mainly to do with consistency and clarity but they should be done fairly quickly. I’m hoping I can do these amendments by the end of this semester. Also Professor Lesley Gourlay (UCL Institute of Education) has agreed to write a Preface for the book which a little added bonus that should bring a wider audience to the book.

Why go with a publisher? The main reason I looked at the more ‘official’ route of going with a publisher was because of their distribution networks. If I’d done the distribution through my own personal learning network I would not have had the impact of a recognised publisher. Also, at he time I wasnt aware that open access publishers even existed! After a little bit of research I found OBP and was really pleased with what they are offering. According to their website, ‘Open Book Publishers, founded in 2008, is already the biggest open access academic publisher of monographs in the UK and amongst the leaders in the English-speaking world’, it has a Platinum (i.e. without any charges to authors, or payment of fees or charges to readers and third parties) Open Access publishing model. Twitter @OpenBookPublish

At the start of this project I didn’t really appreciate just how long it would take to get the book published and it’s still not done yet! Having mainly published on blogs and in journal articles I didn’t fully appreciate the whole review process of editing a book – but I do now. Fingers crossed we will have a published book at the start of next year:)


JSIC (V)LE Challenge


Fed up with Moodle, Blackboard or Canvas and think you could do better? If so, JISC have set up a challenge for you to design a future VLE. Things have changed since the early days of the first VLE’s, such as AI, VR, more inclusive and accessible  learning or even wearable technologies. What would the learning technology environment of the future look like without the constraints of a computer, phone ot tablet screen? This is such a good idea!

Here’s a video explaining the brief:


And there are prizes!!!!

£1000 for the best idea from the shortlist
Two runners-up prizes of £250
All short-listed ideas will be showcased on JISC’s edtech blog and the winning ideas will be showcased at Digifest 2019.

Submit your idea here


#FutureWars: The Impact of New Technologies conference



On Saturday I went to CND’s conference on ‘Future Wars: The Impact of New Technologies’. Its aim was to discuss the impact of new technologies on future wars, and the new challenges we’ll face as a result. I didn’t take any detailed notes but if you’re interested check out the links below.

Future wars 1 Future wars 3 Future wars 4

10.00 Welcome: Dave Webb, Chair CND
10.10 OPENING PLENARY: The shape of things to come
Chair: Carol Turner, Ted Seay, Stuart Parkinson, Steven Rose
Q&A part I, Arielle Denis, Jean Lambert MEP, Q&A part II

Here’s a link to a really useful article on defence funding in universities:

12.00 PLENARY: Militarisation of space
Chair: Cath Bann, Bruce Gagnon, Patrice Salzenstein, Q&A

About the speakers.

If you want to know more check out:

CND Facebook

CND website

#FutureWars Continue reading

Video: Assessment in Moodle


Recording of today’s webinar:

And slides:

Video: Approaches to providing feedback in Moodle


Recording of today’s webinar (mainly about rubrics in Moodle):


Book review interview with Maren Deepwell


Book review (Learning Technology – A Handbook for FE Teachers and Assessors by Daniel Scott) interview with Maren Deepwell:

See the full book review on the ALT blog


Anonymous marking in Moodle @LSBU


Anonymous marking (or blind marking as its called in Moodle) is now the default setting in LSBU’s Moodle.

Recording of today’s staff training webinar:

Anonymous marking in Moodle


Recording of today’s webinar:

What’s new in Moodle @LSBU


Recording of today’s webinar: